Choosing the Best Parenting Style for Your Family

Parenting styles

How much does the parenting style impact a child’s development into adulthood?  The parenting style is influenced from the parent’s culture and their upbringing.  An understanding of the parent’s role and their relationship with their child must be reviewed to see why a child behaves in a particular manner.  As a parent, I would effectively use my parental style to adapt to the needs of my children.


The parent’s relationship with their child heavily contributes to the child’s development.  Dealing with issues 21st century, parents have to work with their children explore techniques that may not be the easiest for them, but benefit the child.  Many people disagree on how to discipline children.  Is it acceptable to spank a child? In the United States, it is left up to the parents to make that decision, but if it appears abusive, the courts can intervene to protect the child.


Diana Baurmind identified three parenting styles: authoritarian, authoritative and permissive.  Each of these styles has a unique set of characteristics and attitudanal behaviors.  Authoritarian parents are controlling. Their parenting style is similar to a dictator; their rules must be obeyed.  If any of their commands are not followed, their child will be reprimanded.   Authoritative parents are similar to authoritarian parents in the fact that they both have rules that children must follow.  However, authoritative parents take on the role of as a “coach” by encouraging the child to work independently and explaining to their child why they are being punished.  Permissive parents are do not set limits or provide their child with constructive feedback to aid them in their development into adulthood.  They do not demand much from their children (Feldman, 2008, p. 264).


Parenting styles can yield positive and negative consequences for the parent and child.  Authoritarian parents may be attempting to protect their child from potentially dangerous situations.  They give their child rules to enforce structure and order. This could lead to the child growing up with an attitude that respects rules and regulations.  Being an authoritarian gives the parent control. They are taking in active role in their child’s life.  In the 7 habits of highly effective people, Covey defines psychic determinism as a behavioral predictor. He indicates that children will act like their parents in many situations. Aspects of the child’s life are already predetermined by their parents. This type of behavior is represented in the authoritarian parental style. This parenting style could harm a child’s creativity, ability to interact socially.  Children raised with by an authoritarian may not feel comfortable communicating social problems.  In a test of the relationship between maternal characteristics and perceptions of children, results reflected that when children believe their parents view them negatively, the children experience increased internalizing and externalizing of behavior problems (Renk, Roddenberry, Oliveros & Sieger, 2007, p. 17).


An authoritative parent may share some of the behaviors noted by authoritarian parents.  The child has an increased chance of performing work independently.  Children may feel more inclined to discuss their issues with parents in hopes of receiving constructive feedback.  Permissive parents lack control of the parent-child relationship.  The child may not be as efficient in setting and achieving goals because they did not receive adequate encouragement from their parents.  The child will be more susceptible to inappropriate behavior since their parents did not expect much from them.

My parents used different styles in preparing me for adulthood. My mother exhibited an authoritarian role. She believed that children should obey their parents’ decisions. Her parental style resembled that of my grandmother. My father expressed a permissive role. He did not discipline me and often explained my punishable behavior as, “boys will be boys.” My grandfather took more of authoritative approach in raising me.  He set parameters for my behavior, but encouraged me to learn new things and express myself. The combination of their parenting styles created my respect for authority and appreciation for life.


I want to be an authoritative parent.  I would communicate with my child; letting them know about my wants and desires. Communication includes me listening to my child and seeing life from their perspective.  Most behavior problems that children display are accredited to the role of the parent.  As a parent, I would teach my child about taking responsibility for their actions. 


Understanding that there will be many learning moments, I will not to get frustrated if they do not achieve goals that I set for them. Parenting is about mentoring.  I would show my child the appropriate way to behave by the way I conduct myself.  Some parents fail to realize how their actions affect their children.  For example, I cannot expect my child to respect the legal system, if they see committing crime.  My main goal as a parent is to help my child develop their identity.  I want my child to understand the importance of being confident and having faith.  Research shows that children who have low self-esteem do not reach their learning potential. They exhibit cautious behavior and are reluctant to ask the teacher questions. This can hinder a child’s ability to grow mentally (Trzesniewski, Donnellan, Moffitt, Robins,  Poulton, & Caspi, 2006, p. 8).


Parenting styles are a factor in determining a child’s behavior. It is the parent’s responsibility to raise their child. There are positives and negative features to each of the parenting styles reviewed, but authoritative provides a greater chance at producing a well-rounded and independent child.  This style provides an environment that benefits the child as they prepare for adulthood.


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